John Goodman 1980s Sci-Fi Horror Is Streaming Now

By Brian Myers | Published


Sometimes the most effective way to create an atmosphere of horror is to place the predators beneath our feet. Such is the case with the 1984 film C.H.U.D., a movie that takes unsuspecting New Yorkers and makes them instant prey to monsters that dwell in the city’s sewer system. This film is full of stars before they were famous, and was one of the first films to feature the legendary John Goodman.

Things Get Going Quickly

C.H.U.D. opens with the wife of a New York City Police Captain walking her dog along an empty street one night. When she gets too close to a sewer opening, a creature lunges from the depths and pulls her and her dog into its subterranean lair and slaughters them.

It’s learned that there is an uptick in missing persons in the area, prompting Captain Bosch (Christopher Curry) to try to solve the disappearances of his wife and the others that have been reported missing.

C.H.U.D. pivots to Captain Bosch interviewing the local leader of a homeless shelter, Reverend A.J. Shepherd (Daniel Stern). The Reverend is concerned about the number of missing homeless persons and tells the Captain that he believes there is a massive government conspiracy.

The Underground

While Captain Bosch is busy trying to solve the disappearances, photographer George Cooper (John Heard) is embarking on a project where he photographs the city’s homeless community. He’s drawn beneath the streets of New York where many of this population live in subway tunnels and in the sewers.

As George and Captain Bosch both make their way in the underground, it becomes quickly clear that there is a giant drop in the number of the homeless living there.



C.H.U.D. soon makes it evident that there are a growing number of monsters that are living underneath New York City. These creatures become known as C.H.U.D.s, an acronym for Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dwellers.

A chemical company is revealed to be responsible, as it has been secretly stashing waste in the underground that has transformed the homeless population into monstrous killers.

As C.H.U.D. continues, it’s explained that the conspiracy to hide this information goes all the way up the chain of local police and government and involves the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

The infected homeless persons are mutating and eating the unaffected but are forced to surface as their primary food source is dwindling. It’s a race to complete a plan to eliminate the monsters once and for all before they all surface and before the corrupt public officials can stop it.

Stood The Test Of Time

C.H.U.D. is a great example of a low-budget horror film that has stood the test of time for its interesting storyline and its creature effects. The movie succeeds in building a sense of suspense and for masterfully using hidden forms of terror to startle audiences. Unlike a Michaeal Myers or Jason Vorhees, the C.H.U.D.s are not out in the open, making their hunting instinct all the more unsettling.

Stream It Now



The film is a great opportunity to see storied actors before they were household names. John Heard and Daniel Stern are excellent in the lead roles, but audiences also get a look at John Goodman (who plays a cop) and Patricia Richardson (who performed a small part as an ad agency employee). C.H.U.D. gives chills as well as a view of favorite familiar faces, and is a 3.5/5.0-star movie.

You can stream C.H.U.D. for free with Pluto, Tubi, and Roku, or rent it On Demand with AppleTV, Vudu, and Prime.